Science and engineering are advancing rapidly in part due to ever more powerful computer simulations, yet the most advanced supercomputers require programming skills that all too few U.S. researchers possess. At the same time, affordable computers and committed national programs outside the U.S. are eroding American competitiveness in number of simulation-driven fields.
These are some of the key findings in the International Assessment of Research and Development in Simulation-Based Engineering and Science, released on Apr. 22, 2009, by the World Technology Evaluation Center (WTEC).
"The startling news was how quickly our assumptions have to change," said Phillip Westmoreland, program director for combustion, fire and plasma systems at the National Science Foundation (NSF) and one of the sponsors of the report. "Because computer chip speeds aren't increasing, hundreds and thousands of chips are being ganged together, each one with many processors. New ways of programming are necessary."
Like other WTEC studies, this study was led by a team of leading researchers from a range of simulation science and engineering disciplines and involved site visits to research facilities around the world.
The nearly 400-page, multi-agency report highlights several areas in which the U.S. still maintains a competitive edge, including the development of novel algorithms, but also highlights endeavors that are increasingly driven by efforts in Europe or Asia, such as the creation and simulation of new materials from first principles.
"Some of the new high-powered computers are as common as gaming computers, so key breakthroughs and leadership could come from anywhere in the world," added Westmoreland. "Last week's research-directions workshop brought together engineers and scientists from around the country, developing ideas that would keep the U.S. at the vanguard as we face these changes."
Sharon Glotzer of the University of Michigan chaired the panel of experts that executed the studies of the Asian, European and U.S. simulation research activities. Peter Cummings of both Vanderbilt University and Oak Ridge National Laboratory co-authored the report with Glotzer and seven other panelists, and the two co-chaired the Apr. 22-23, 2009, workshop with Glotzer that provided agencies initial guidance on strategic directions.
"Progress in simulation-based engineering and science holds great promise for the pervasive advancement of knowledge and understanding through discovery," said Clark Cooper, program director for materials and surface engineering at NSF and also a sponsor of the report. "We expect future developments to continue to enhance prediction and decision making in the presence of uncertainty."
The WTEC study was funded by the National Science Foundation, Department of Defense, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Standards and Technology and the Department of Energy
Joshua A. Chamot | EurekAlert!
Study suggests buried Internet infrastructure at risk as sea levels rise
17.07.2018 | University of Wisconsin-Madison
Microscopic trampoline may help create networks of quantum computers
17.07.2018 | University of Colorado at Boulder
For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.
To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...
For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.
Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...
Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.
A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...
Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.
"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....
Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.
Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...
13.07.2018 | Event News
12.07.2018 | Event News
03.07.2018 | Event News
17.07.2018 | Information Technology
17.07.2018 | Materials Sciences
17.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering